252 JOURNEYS IN PEESIA FAREWELL contact between landowner and peasant which is such a desirable feature of proprietorship, but it leaves the villages exposed to the exactions of the nasr, and without a semblance of protection from the rapacious demands of the provincial authorities. It is noteworthy that fortunes made in trade are seeking investment in land. The upper classes in Persia appear to me to differ widely from Orientals, as they are supposed to be, and often really are. They love life intensely, fill it with enjoyment, and neither regard existence as a task to be toiled through nor as a burden to be got rid of. Hand- some, robust, restless, intelligent, imaginative, accumu- lative, vivacious, polished in manner and speech, many of them excellent linguists, well acquainted with their own literature, especially with their poets; lavish, alike in expenditure on personal luxuries and in charity to the poor; full of artistic instincts, and loving to surround themselves with the beautiful; inquisitive, adaptable; addicted to sport and out-of-doors life, untruthful both from hereditary suspiciousness and excess of courtesy— the Persian gentleman has an individuality of his own which is more nearly akin to the French or Eussian than to the Oriental type. My impressions of the morals both of the Persian peasantry and the Bakhtiari Lurs are, as to some points, rather favourable than the reverse, and I think and hope that there is as much domestic affection and fidelity as is compatible with a religion which more or less effectually secures the degradation of woman. The morals of the upper classes are, I believe, very easy. In various care- fully written papers, one of them at least official, very painful glimpses have been given incidentally into the state of Persian upper-class morality, and undoubtedly the intrigues of the andarun are as unfavourable to purity as they are to happiness^.